Meet Sammy: The elder cockatiel at S.C. CARES

By Cindy Hedrick

As of March 2016, S.C. CARES has 150 resident animals that call us home.

Out of that number, 49 of them are in our avian family. Our bird family is made up of lots of different species of parrots and even a couple of pigeons and one dove.

Meet Sam or “Sammy” as we affectionately call him. Sam is a grey cockatiel and would normally be seen flying free in Australia. If you or anyone you know has had a bird, chances are it was a cockatiel. Cockatiels are normally 12 to 14 inches from crest to tip of the tail making them a manageable size for humans.

Please don’t let their size fool you; these little birds are full of personality.

Some cockatiels will learn to talk but mostly their language is made up of whistles and beeps. Sam was one of our earliest rescues before we moved here and opened S.C. CARES. Sammy lived in a retirement home and in some places the animals bring comfort to many of the residents there.

In this case, Sammy became too popular, so much so the residents wanted to feed him treats like cookies and other items that were not healthy for him. Sammy came to live with us in 2002 and moved with us to open S.C. CARES in 2006.

He is our elder cockatiel at 16 years old. Cockatiels normally have a life span of 15-25 years so we hope Sammy will be with us for a long time to come.

Sammy loves to whistle the theme to “The Andy Griffith Show.” He must have watched or heard it a lot in the retirement center. At times he will fly to our shoulder to ride around a bit and whistle to you while you work.

To meet Sammy and the other residents of S.C. CARES, please contact us via email or by calling 843-546-7893 or go to our website